Mankato doesn’t hibernate for the winter, which means there’s still plenty to do! Whether it’s hitting the trails on a snowbike, cruising down Mount Kato on a tube, or playing hockey on one of our many skating rinks, get ready for a winter you won’t soon forget. Strap on your skis, ice skates or snowshoes and get out and experience Mankato this winter.
1. Cross Country Skiing
Mankato is surrounded by an extensive trail system featuring groomed pathways which bring cross country skiers through Indian Lake Park, Williams Nature Center, Bray Park, Wildwood Conservation Area and Daly Park. Each location presents an exciting journey for a beginner or experienced cross country skier. Call 507-304-4025 or visit Blue Earth County’s website. Go>
2. Down-Hill Skiing
Down-hill skiers find that Mount Kato remains a hub for fast action and short lines. With 19 groomed trails and four terrain parks for skiing and snowboarding, you’ll never run out of things to do. Getting cold? Head inside the cozy ski lodge for recuperation and dining.
Each winter fans swarm indoors to cheer on their Minnesota State University, Mankato Men’s and Women’s Division I Hockey at the Verizon Center. During period intermissions partake in the games and cheers with the crowd. Go>
4. Ice Skating
Stay outside and skate in one of Mankato’s 11 parks with outdoor skating rinks. Too cold? All Season’s Arena offers an indoor skating rink with affordable with skate rentals. Skate for fun or challenge your friends to a game of hockey. Go>
Grab a sled or tube and head to the legendary Sibley Park or Spring Lake Park hill for downhill sledding. Don’t have a tube? No problem. Head to Mount Kato, which provides large tubes for a smoother ride with just as much thrill.
Snowbikes or “fat bikes” are best experienced along packed trails. Head to Seven Mile Creek Park, Kiwanis Recreation Area, Ft. LeHillier Trail or Indian Lake Conservation Area. to try it yourself. Want to ride with a group? Nicollet Bike Shop offers group rides on Tuesdays.
There are 160 miles of trails for snowmobilers in Blue Earth County. Snowmobilers should visit the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources website to find detailed maps of available snowmobile routes. Go>
Looking for a unique experience in our parks and on our trails this winter? Give snowshoeing a try! This activity allows you to experience winter in all its wonder. Go it alone or book a tour with the local experts, Bent River Outfitter. Rent snowshoes from Bent River Outfitter or Minnesota State University, Mankato Campus Recreation. Looking for a snowshoe and winery combo? Join Bent River Outfitters for a winter tour around the scenic landscapes home to our unique wineries, Morgan Creek Vineyards and Chankaska Creek Ranch and Winery. After exploring the snow-covered vineyards, enjoy the warmth of a cozy atmosphere and taste of select cheeses and local vino. Go>